Thursday Tidbits

Posted on March 29, 2018 under Thursday Tidbits with 7 comments

Heading off to Morrison School in 1958


“School days, school days, dear old golden rule days,

Reading and wring and ritmetic, taught to the tune of the hickory stick.”

School Days. Cobb /Edwards

School days was written back in 1907. It’s a song about a mature couple looking back sentimentally on their childhood together in primary school.

I visit my mom daily at the RK. Music is a big part of our conversation and there are not many days that she doesn’t start humming “School Days.” Do you look back on your earliest days of education with fondness? Most of us probably got through elementary school without too many battle scars. Junior High and High School was another matter altogether.

Many of us in this part of the world were taught by nuns throughout our schooling. While excellent educators, they knew a thing or two about the hickory stick and weren’t afraid to use it. Discipline wasn’t an issue. I think the television series “Fear Factor” derived its roots from that era. Intimidation and fear kept youngsters on high alert all the time. And public shaming was in vogue. You must remember staying after school and having to write on the blackboard, “I will not chew gum in school” a hundred times?

So, students, here is your task today. Go to your computer and type the following 100 times: “I will not whine or complain once today.” Even better, go into your grandchild’s play room, grab a piece of chalk and write it out on a piece of slate the old fashioned way.

Oh, crap. It’s “Len’s Lecture” time again. I’m sure many of you would like me to come down out of the pulpit one of these days ( soon!) and get back to telling funny stories. Be patient. There’s still lots to chuckle about.

We complain about the most mundane things like the lineup at a grocery store or slow service in a restaurant. Or (gasp) dandelions on the lawn. That’s a real soul destroyer. And, yes, let he who hath not sinned, cast the first stone. My impatience at convenience stores, waiting to buy a quart of milk, while someone dutifully and painfully checks 3 million lottery tickets to see if they’ve won $2.00,is legendary. Those people already know they’ve won $2.00 but have to share their exuberance with winning with the great unwashed mass.

Get to the point, Len.

A few days ago, I met a lady who had a devastating car accident a year or so ago and became a quadriplegic. The accident left her with other impairments. In the blink of an eye, her life changed forever. A couple of hours later, I ran into an old friend who has a family member in the late stages of Huntington’s disease… 20 years and counting. The physical and emotional toll on the family is incalculable.


There are lots and lots of people who have a valid right to complain but those of us lucky enough to be healthy and with a roof over our heads, should resist the temptation to whine.

This Easter weekend, take a few moments and realize how lucky you are. Be consciously grateful for what you have.

By the way,I’m still picking splinters out of my arse from the hickory stick!

Have a great Easter.


Enjoy this? Visit the rest of my website to enjoy more of my work or buy my books!
Highland Hearing Clinic

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.


7 Responses to Thursday Tidbits

  1. w.p. (Bill ) Gottschall Sr. says:

    I well remember the nuns.Picking splinters out of your arse, is one thing. I went through the same school being called a baby killer. First generation german post war, in a scottish village. My best friend was called that nigger.Some of us have very different stories to tell about growing up in the little vacation. Ask about my journey sometime.

    • Katherine Reed says:

      Good riddance to those things. At least we’re making some progress on these problems — some. I have dear friends who were called “Krauts” in school in the ’60s. We humans need to keep working on this. Everyone should receive respect and fairness.

  2. Sheila redden says:

    Hi Len. Just to let you know that Joan Dillon passed away last night. Were you one of her cubs or scouts or X- project people? She was a dear friend of mine.

    • Gerard Chisholm says:

      Sorry to hear of Joans passing.I was one of her cubs back in the 60s.She gave a lot of herself to the community.

  3. omg this story seems very familiar ,yes we all have nun stories from that school but I have fond memories of Girlie Grant she taught both my daughter & myself we both loved her.

  4. Gerard Chisholm says:

    Sorry to hear of Joans passing.I was one of her cubs back in the 60s.She gave a lot of herself to the community.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.